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ESO PVE Necromancer Stamina DPS Build: Defiler

In this Elder Scrolls Online Build Guide I am going to cover a Necromancer Stamina DPS Build that can do over 50k+ DPS on an Iron Atronach Trial dummy and over 35k+ on a normal 3m Health Dummy. This build is aimed for PvE group play, while relying on allies to buff your surviveability so that you can dish out an enormous amount of damage.


Necromancer Stamina DPS Build Concept

This build uses a typical Stamina DPS setup combined with Necromancer DPS abilities that are morphed into their Stamina version. High DPS comes from properly rotating Necromancer abilities that are mixed with Dual Wield and Bow skills. Stamina DPS Builds in many cases use Dual Wield for their frontbar and Bow for backbar, and this build uses the same setup because it works the best for what we are trying to accomplish. Instead of elemental damage, Venom Skull, Blighted Blastbones and Detonating Syphon are going to be doing Disease and Poison damage, which is perfect for Stamina DPS.

Necro DPS Combo that in Stamina variation does combination of Disease and Poison Damage

Necromancer Stamina DPS Attributes and Skills

Putting all points into Stamina is great for achieving the highest possible DPS numbers, but in reality you need some more Health to not die all the time when the going gets tough. Splitting points between Health and Stamina should be something like 15 points into Health and rest into Stamina. Depending on gear and food buffs Health goes up to somewhere between 20-25k and Stamina is around 30-36k.

As for abilities, your Frontbar consists of a Dual Wield and Necromancer mix. With this setup we inflict Bleed and Poison DoTs on top of dealing lots of direct damage. Whirling Blades is great to speed up a enemy’s demise when their Health goes below 50% because it does 100% increased damage. It is an ability that does not need to be used at all before an enemy falls below 50% Health, to conserve Stamina, but should be used when more enemies are in the vicinity. Rending Slashes puts a Bleed DoT effect that ticks while we focus on doing our Necro DPS combo Blighted Blastbones, Venom Skull and Detonating Siphon.

Stam Necro uses Weapon and Necro Skills to do massive direct damage and DoT

The Backbar consists of many different abilities that help in achieving higher dps numbers. Skeletal Archer doesn’t seem like a good choice at first glance, however, we get an additional 10% crit chance against enemies under 25% Health from the Death Knell passive by just having Skeletal Archer slotted. With this setup the bonus from Death Knell is 30% for both bars. The benefits of having Skeletal Archer do not stop with Death Knell either, as Undead Confederate grants 200 Magicka and Stamina Recovery when any summon is active.



Rending Slashes – An ability that puts a significant bleed DoT that lasts for 9 secs and reduces Movement Speed for 40%. Morphed from Twin Slashes.


Whirling Blades – A fantastic ability for when enemies drop under 50% health. It can be used when enemies have over 50% but it is not going to be nearly as effective. However by using this skill you are granted Major Endurance, which increases Stamina Recovery by 20% for 10 secs, so if you are struggling with stamina use it occasionally even when enemies are over 50%. Morphed from Whirlwind.


Venom Skull – A direct damage ability that does Poison damage and every Necromancer ability counts toward the third cast of Venom Skull that does 20% increased damage. Morphed from Flame Skull.


Blighted Blastbones – Summons a Skeleton that runs at enemies and deals big Disease damage to everyone around it upon exploding. Disease damage also puts Major Defile on enemies that reduces their Healing Received and Health Recovery that isn’t that useful in PvE, but it is very good for PvP. Creates a corpse on death. Morphed from Blastbones.


Detonating Siphon – Consumes a corpse that explodes and deals a massive DoT over 12 secs. Everyone between you and the corpse is affected as well. When slotted increases damage done by 3%. Morphed from Shocking Siphon.



Endless Hail – An ability that does consecutive damage for 10 secs. This upgrade increases duration and reduces cost. Morphed from Volley.


Poison Injection – A poison DoT ability that does 200% damage more to enemies with lower than 50% health. Morphed from Poison Arrow.


Rearming Trap – A trap that resets itself and does physical damage. Upon damaging the enemy you are granted Minor Force buff that increases Critical Damage by 10%. Morphed from Trap Beast.


Skeletal Archer – Summons a Skeletal Archer that does low damage on its own, but it is nice to have nonetheless due to Death Knell and Undead Confederate. Morphed from Skeletal Mage.

The last Backbar ability can be whatever you see fit. Detonating Siphon can be placed here as well to increase damage done by 3% when using Backbar abilities. Razor Caltrops can do some more damage while rotating abilities. Summoner’s Armor is a nice choice if you want to add more survivability with Major Ward and Major Resolve. Hungry Scythe, Resistant Flesh and Resolving Vigor are there if you want to use last slot for healing.

Ultimate Abilities


Flawless Dawnbreaker – This ability is very popular for DPS builds because by just slotting it you get a weapon damage increase. It is best equipped on the frontbar. Flawless Dawnbreaker won’t be used that much though, because we use it only for that passive weapon damage increase. Morphed from Dawnbreaker.


Pestilent Collosus – A high damage ultimate that does Disease damage and applies Major Vulnerability for 3 secs after each strike. This is the ultimate that we are going to use all the time because it does much more damage than Dawnbreaker. Morphed from Frozen Collosus.

Necromancer Stamina DPS Rotation

Rotation can be divided into 2 methods:

  • Enemy over 50% Health

For this version we do not need to use Whirling Blades at all unless there are many enemies close to you. Light Attacking is mandatory before every ability, with Heavy Attacks being used when Stamina is needed. In the end it should look like this:

Skeletal Archer -> Unnerving Boneyard -> Rearming Trap -> Poison Injection -> Endless Hail -> SWITCH -> Rending Slashes -> Blighted Blastbones -> Venom Skull x2 -> Detonating Siphon

  • Enemy under 50% Health

This time we are adding Whirling Blades into the mix.

Skeletal Archer -> Unnerving Boneyard -> Rearming Trap -> Poison Injection -> Endless Hail -> SWITCH -> Rending Slashes -> Whirling Blades -> Blighted Blastbones -> Venom Skull -> Whirling Blades -> Detonating Siphon

Necromancer Stam DPS Race

Any race that influences Stamina in any way is good for this build. However there are some that are better than others, with Redguard and Khajiit would be my primary choices. Redguard gives +2000 Max Stamina, reduces cost of Weapon Abilities by 8% and restores 950 Stamina every 5 secs when dealing direct damage. Khajiit in addition to increasing all 3 resources and recovery, increases Critical Damage and Healing by 10%.


Imperial, Dunmer and Bosmer are ok alternatives with Imperial being the best choice out of these 3.

Necromancer Stam DPS Champion Skills

There are plenty useful Champion Skills you can have, but points are limited. Percentages behind the decimal point are not accounted for when adding points to Champion Skills. For example, Elemental Defender at Rank 60 reduces damage taken from elemental attacks by 12.57%, but your gain is actually 12%. Now that you know this you can save points and put them elsewhere where gains would be more beneficial. Try to round up numbers to get the most out of these Champion Skills.

Here is my recommended setup for the Necromancer Stam DPS Build:

Necromancer Stam DPS Gear (Weapons, Armor & Jewelry)

The weapon combination that we are using is Dual Weapons on the frontbar with Bow on the backbar. Which weapon you are going to use for Dual Wield is up to you because each has something going for it. Maelstrom Bow is the best choice for the backbar, because it improves the Endless Hail ability.

Bows are generally used on backbars for stamina dps builds because of Endless Hail and Poison Injection abilities that last for 10 secs which is enough to keep doing damage while all front bar abilities are being rotated.

Sets that can be used for this build are typical stamina dps sets. Before acquiring Trial gear, sets like Hunding’s Rage, Briarheart and Night Mother’s Embrace are great choices because they are fairly easy to obtain and provide great bonuses.

As you progress further sets like Scavenging Demise, Pillar of Nirn, Archer’s Mind, Deadly Strike and Flanking Strategist should be on your radar. There are really many great sets for stamina dps so it is hard to pick something really bad.

Trial gear that works great here is Arms of Relequen, Tooth of Lokkestizz, Roar of Alkosh, Quick Serpent and Poisonous Serpent.

Monster sets that are best for this build are Velidreth, Slimecraw and Selene. I tested all 3 with Briarheart and Arms of Relenquen and all performed similarly. I suggest using Heavy versions of Monster sets to get more health.

Traits & Enchantments

WEAPONS: Weapon Damage Glyph and Precise/Nirnhoned Trait

ARMOR: Stamina Glyph and Divines Trait

JEWELRY: Weapon Damage Gylph and Bloodthirsty Trait

Final Thoughts

Stamina Necromancer DPS builds are slightly stronger than their Magicka counterparts. They can hang with the best and are fun to play thanks to necro DPS abilities that make rotations dynamic, which is due to Blighted Blastbones needing some time to get to the enemy. This build is meant for PvE group play so for solo you are going to need some heals and increased resistances. In that case Summoner Armor for resistance and Hungry Scythe, Resistant Flesh or Resolving Vigor for heals are good choices.

This build is for group play so to be successful solo adjustments are needed

Mundus Stones that work best are Shadow and Tower. Shadow is better choice when you have mastered the rotation because then Stamina will be used more efficiently and Tower is better for learning the ropes so that you do not run out of stamina so easily.

Stay tuned for more ESO Builds and ESO Content through out June as we dive deeper into Elsweyr!

About the Author


2 responses to “ESO PVE Necromancer Stamina DPS Build: Defiler”

  1. So there was no mention of the orc race and being a viable solution to the Stamcro build.

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